How to Apologize to a Girl You Hurt That You Ended Up Losing

Splitting up can be difficult, but healing is possible.
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A genuine apology that shows real concern for the person you have wronged can help both people heal, but if the apology is not heartfelt it can cause even more anger. Examining your thoughts and feelings about what happened can prepare you to apologize in a way that could help heal you and the girl that you lost.

1 Examine Your Motives

Sometimes the desire to apologize is strong because you miss the person you've lost so much. You may be secretly hoping that your apology will result in the two of you getting back together, thus getting rid of your pain. Your feelings in this case, while understandable, are driven more by your own pain than concern about hers. It might be hard to deliver a sincere apology in this case. You might have to nurse your wounds a bit first.

2 Don't Attach Strings

A sincere apology is possible when you are not trying to manipulate the other person into taking some action, such as forgiving you or being nice to you. If you are feeling awful about having hurt her simply because you caused pain to someone you cared about, and this is the reason you want to apologize, you are on the right track. It is OK to ask forgiveness -- but don't demand it. Realize that forgiveness often takes time.

3 Take Full Responsibility

While it is OK to say that you never intended to hurt the other person -- if that is, in fact, true -- making excuses for your behavior, blaming the other person for what you did or telling her that she is over-reacting will taint any attempt at healing. Instead, use phrases like, "I know I was wrong," "I shouldn't have done that" and "I don't blame you for being upset" -- if they are from the heart.

4 Consider Her Needs

Your ex may be too angry and hurt to speak to you or listen to your apology. It’s important to respect that. You might need to let a bit of time pass and then try again -- but don't harass her. Texting an apology might seem tempting, but there is nothing more powerful than for a person to see heartfelt remorse in your face. It's hard to convey that in a text message. Another consideration is that a good apology could be very personal, so you may not want to send that in a text to someone who is angry at you -- you never know where that text might end up. To text or not to text is a judgment call. Proceed with caution.

5 Make Amends

An apology can be perceived as empty if you are not willing to make amends. If what you did caused damage -- for example, if you spread rumors about her -- you need to publicly take those back. Even if the damage can’t be reversed, it's important to correct your mistake. It is painful but normal to make mistakes in relationships. But you can minimize the damage by apologizing sincerely and making amends. According to the American Psychological Association, apologies can lead to forgiveness, healing and even a better quality of life.

Lisa C. DeLuca is a psychotherapist, social worker and writer. Her clinical practice focuses on teens, couples, families, men and women and the elderly. Lisa's specialties include cognitive behavioral therapy for panic disorder, family systems therapy, relationship coaching, parenting and family caregiving at the end of life. She earned a master's degree in social work from Stony Brook University and has been writing professionally since 1984.